The fireworks are still peppering the sky as people shout—why do they invariably shout at fireworks?—and I sit down to write this.

Text messages for wishes of a happy new year come in, I smile with fondness as people who love me or think of me in this moment send pictures or words of joy. I’ll reply in kind in a few minutes. It’s a new year, starting fresh. Everyone seems optimistic in that minute after the countdown.

As I watched the fireworks go off, in a similar position from the summer when I watched fireworks on New Brunswick day, and on Canada day, I wondered how it is that I seem to find myself in this position every cliched holiday.

Alone, whether I’ve planned for it or not.

So I embrace it this time. The melancholy and wave of sadness or despair that I’ve been afraid of for so long. I allow myself to stare at it.

I’m alone. I wait for anguish. If it’s going to come, surely it will come now.

If it’ll come, surely it’ll be on New Year’s Eve, as I watch my cats scatter in fear at the loud pops the fireworks make. On my first new year as a single woman in over a decade. Totally alone and sober.

I’ve left my phone in the living room, and my iPad, and the television running whatever show I’ve put on. They all continue what they’re doing. I’ve picked up scissors on my way to the window in my bedroom because I’m going to cut yarn in a minute, to wind a ball of yarn. It’ll be how I begin my new year. I play with the scissors as I watch the fireworks. And I feel. I’m not avoiding anything, I just let whatever will come, come. Even though I’ve been afraid for a long time, I’m not right now.

I’m alone, but that’s okay. All it means is that I’m alone right now. My eyes fill, I am sad, but it feels beautiful. It feels right and hard and like the kind of pain you feel when a pressure is lifted. It feels like letting go. It feels like honest and real and— fireworks have finished but now a fire alarm is blaring, and sirens come. Life continues, and that suspended moment of wistful acceptance of whatever will come… has passed.

Because really. You can’t marinate in sadness indefinitely. That’s how you miss things.

New Years resolutions

  1. More music played and sung and heard and made and in every corner of my life. More music.
  2. More writing things that make my heart lighter, help me figure things out, and make me feel grounded. Writing has always done so much more for me than I give it credit for. More writing.
  3. More making things that make my soul feel seen. More knitting and painting and drawing and sewing and corresponding with cards I’ve made. More making.
  4. More saying yes to doing things that make my body feel good. More yoga, and gym time, wandering walks, outdoor adventures, and sexy times with sexy people I enjoy. More saying yes.
  5. More reading. Just… More reading.